9/11 First Responders Not Invited To 10th Anniversary Ceremony At Ground Zero

NEW YORK (1010 WINS) — First responders will not be invited to this year’s 9/11 ceremony at Ground Zero. That’s the word from city officials who say there isn’t enough room for the tens of thousands of firefighters, police and other rescue workers.

LISTEN: 1010 WINS’ Glenn Schuck reports

According to a report by the Daily News, security issues and making sure that all of the victims’ families will be able to participate in the 10th anniversary of 9/11, contributed to first responders not being invited to the ceremony.

Phil, a construction worker at Ground Zero, says the city needs to figure out a way to have first responders at this anniversary.

“I think that they should be allowed to go because too many of their brothers and sisters lost their lives and they should be the first ones that are included,” he said. “They should make it happen. I’m sure there are going to be a lot of people here who shouldn’t be here.”

First responders will be given a separate ceremony at a later date.

Both President Barack Obama and former president George W. Bush will be at this year’s ceremony as well as former mayor Rudy Giuliani and other dignitaries, meaning extra security will be on hand.

In addition, only a limited number of lawmakers from the Tri-state area will be allowed to attend.

On Friday, House Speaker Rep. John Boehner said the government would be paying for representatives from New York, New Jersey and Connecticut to attend the ceremony.

An estimated 91,000 police, firefighters and other first responders helped with the search and rescue efforts in the wake of the September 11th attacks.

What do you think about first responders not being invited? Sound off below in our comments section…


One Comment

  1. topp says:

    What bs!!!! they should be allowed to go as thery but there lifes onthe line on the day off . and if they dont have the room maybe they should closed down more of newyork for a few hours so they can go .An estimated 91,000 police, firefighters and other first responders helped with the search and rescue efforts in the wake of the September 11th attacks.plus the onces that did but the life on the line and payid with there lifes .

  2. Stephen Coad says:

    That’s ridiculous! 9/11 isn’t remembered yearly because of the terrorist act. It’s when everyone stops and thinks about the brave men and women that risked their lives and went running into two buildings that were unfortunately about to collapse. It’s about how many lives they saved in this selfless act, but also remembering that there are others who are left that work in those emergency services that similarly risk their lives every day helping others. And these other emergency service workers who help others every day should be the first people in the line to pay tribute to their fallen comrades…

  3. Kelly says:

    Which victims families are allowed to go? Just those that worked in the building or just happened to be there on that day? Or do they consider the 1st responders, FDNY, NYPD, doctors, nurses, volunteers that just showed up to help and died, also victims? For their information those firemen, EMS spend as much time with their coworkers as they do their family, it is a brotherhood/sisterhood among us, yes I am a 20 yr Paramedic. Paying someone to be there? Really? Just tell them to stay home and give the victims families what they were to be paid. Bloomberg is a Blooming Idiot, he has proved it over and over again.

  4. Kat Wolfdancer says:

    I think every single first responder who wishes to be present, should be awarded a spot of Honor at EVERY ceremony for this event (this one and the *other* one) It is beyond ridiculous to not invite them. After all, it is a Remembrance. They have much to remember, and WE have much to be very grateful for. In the end, I think that is what is important here.


  5. Pentagon says:

    I cannot say anything about who did what in New York on 9/11/01 because I was not there. However the first responders that were on site at the Pentagon were my coworkers. We had the majority of the injured out of harms way and triaged before they could get to us. I’m not saying this to lessen the service of fire and rescue. Only to let them know that others are being left out of the memorial services in order to make room for people that ran into bomb shelters.
    We are not invited to the ceremony at the pentagon.
    We were only contractors.

  6. Mimi Fountain says:

    The first responders that were there, that fought to save lives, that risk their own lives, should be invited.. way before the politicians, and news media that watched it on TV!!!!!!

  7. Claire says:

    I’d be interested to know how many politicans, government employees (Local, state and federal) celebrities, government officials and hanger ons are invited to get the event more media coverage in place of the people who should actually be there!! I think the NY City Council should put forward the list of people who are invited!!!
    I have’t actually read where it will be held but doesn’t New York have the biggest New years party ever? Wouldn’t it be logical to have the Anniversary event outside so everyone can go!!!! With the people who are just there for media coverage at the back!!!

    1. Claire says:

      Sorry, I forgot to mention that I’m from Australia and have been there twice, before and after 9/11.
      My condolences New York City, your Mayor is a heartless, inconsiderate human being!!!

  8. Jaime says:

    I think this is crude, rude and simply shameful! How would you feel if they just hadn’t shown up that fateful day to help and save lives because there simply wasn’t room? I’m disgusted once again by our government.

  9. another face says:

    Its insulting, thanks to those Fire fighters and police alike lots of lives were saved, i think its an insult, they should be the first above all else to arrive i know the feeling being a troop in afgan currently, they all lost a great number all 343 were brothers and sisters, it brings a whole new meaning to the phrase ” IF YOU DONT STAND BEHIND OUR TROOPS PLEASE DO A FAVOR AND STAND IN FRONT” i think this applies,

  10. MsLea says:

    They should be the FIRST to be invited……. Serious Lack of Respect for these people who put their Life on the Line.

  11. Ella says:

    I’m not going to rehash the same thing as everybody else, nor rant, although everyone is completely right and entitled to their opinion…

    But to you politicians, you planners, to you who sit back and pretend to even fathom what these people went through, to make that decision, and to run over those who would die for your very freedom and safety?

    You are wrong, and you know it. Shame on you.

  12. Brenda says:

    So so Sad what Our country has come too, Unbelievable.! If it were not for all the firefighters and police and the rest involved with rescue and clean up they would probably be remembering far more. Leave the politicians at home or more
    importantly they need to concentrate on their jobs and do a better job of that. The USA is in a poor state of debt and dysfunction than ever before! God help us all!!

  13. DonnaRowland says:


  14. Dean Ferguson says:

    It sadens me to see media post stuff like this!!!!! Alot of Men and Woman were there on 9/11 and they were not asked to be there. They did there job for there country and did not have to be asked to show up!!!! Now 10 year later they are not even asked to attend there ceremony for the ones that they lost??? There is something wrong with this. Both the president and past president will be there should we say to them that they should not be allowed to attend???? It is like a friend of me quoted It’s like holding an anniversary party without inviting the couple. Leaving out the people most important. It’s a real insult to all of them. What thanks??!! With hurricane season just starting this jaclk ass wants to hope he does not need any help!!!! All those whom assisted during 9/11 lost loved ones and were not paid to attend a 10 yr anniversarry!!!! they showed up unpaid not to think all those volenteers that helped out from other countries like mine where as I am from Canada.

  15. Christy says:

    Oh, because the “LAWMAKERS” that will be in attendance are the ones who ran towards a towering inferno that was collapsing in order to save lives? Because those lawmakers were the brave heroes that rushed in without a thought for their own safety? right. Yeah I totally see the logic.

  16. Angel J says:

    Listen this is very simple. Nobody is saying that this is an outrage because we think that the first responders want to strut around puffing out their feathers…if they don’t feel that way who cares? This is about a come one, come all MEMORIAL, so that everyone can REMEMBER. If there was a huge multiple-car accident and a memorial service was held on the highway, the families and friends of the loved ones who died and the police officers and fireman and EMS would be there. Some might chose not go, some might go because by helping they became a PART of the accident. Point being, this a MEMORIAL, not a parade, and if you were digging through rubble and finding dead bodies and saving people, NOBODY has the right tell you that you can’t attend a memorial if in your heart that is what you want to do. They should just go anyway, if men who sat in their offices watching the disaster on their fancy TVs with all their paid “intelligence” can be there, so can the people who bled, cried and toiled mercilessly. This is America. Everyone needs to start acting like it. Freedom of CHOICE.

  17. armetisius says:

    You are surprised by this? When are you going to realize that, to the wealthy, you are nothing but another variety of McDonalds’ employee.

  18. Rachel says:

    Dear First Responders

    I was eight years old when 9/11 happened, and on that day I was confused, and scared that something had happened to my dad. But thanks to a brave firefighter, my dad came home alive. I never knew your name, and probably never will, but thank you. Even if the politicians have forgotten, I will always keep you in my heart.

    1. Darci says:

      Hi Rachel,

      First and foremost, I am very happy to hear your dad survived that tragic day. I wanted to share this petition with you. I have written it to petition the City of New York to extend an invitation to first responders so that men and women like those that saved your father will get the recognition and honor that they deserve. Please sign my petition and spread the word to your friends and family to sign also.


  19. Pinkclaire says:

    There was enough room for First Responders when they were fighting for the lives of every man woman and child on 9/11! They have more right than any dignitary to be there. Without the First Responders many, many more people would be dead.. As it is many of their colleagues lost their lives that day. What an insult to be told that they will have their own separate ceremony on a different day!! What an insult to those men and women. You just couldn’t make it up could you?

  20. Wife of a now retired firefighter paramedic says:

    They came when called and did not hesitate to go into those burning buildings and to help look for survivors following this tragic event. First responders lost their brothers and sisters that day too. They too need to find closer and to pay respect to those who did not come home with them.

  21. Rina says:

    There isn’t enough room in New York City for 9,000 policman and fireman? Are you serious? They have more people than that for a “Today Show” concert! You cannot convince me that in a city were more than 10,000 people could be on a single square block that they can’t make it work. If it weren’t for them, some of the survivors who are able to attend wouldn’t be there!

    It is AMAZING to see the amount of lies, conjecture, and callousness that some people can spew behind a keyboard. If you want to spout rumors of a conspiracy…BACK IT UP WITH FACTS OR PROOF. Alls I know for a FACT is that innocent lives were lost and that hard working civil servants lost their lives, mental and physical health to protect us and deserve respect!

  22. tdp says:

    They did their job, period. How many accolades do you want for showing up to work in the morning? It doesn’t matter if they risked their lives in a catastrophic event or a simple house fire: that is what they signed up to do. There are obviously a lot of people being invited to this event as it is, if there just isn’t room then what do you expect them to do?

    I’m totally sure the planning committee was sitting around plotting ways to keep the first responders from being able to attend. They’ve already said there would be another ceremony specifically for them, what more do you want?

  23. Darci says:

    Clearly, we are all on the same page. It is shameful, to say the least, to hear that first responders cannot attend the 9/11 ceremony on this upcoming 10 year anniversary. Unfortunately, I doubt Mayor Bloomberg is taking the time to read all of these comments — he knows the outrage that Americans feel. Therefore, I have put together a petition through Change.org — a progressive blogging website that also gave birth to legislatures adopting “Caylee’s Law” after the Casey Anthony trial. I need 5,000 signatures in order for Bloomberg to receive the petition. I need these before 9/11. Therefore, I need your help! Please sign, post on your social networking sites and email everyone that you know. We must stand up against these politicians just like the first-responders stood up for us 10 years ago.


    Thank you for your support!

  24. Elsa Guerra says:

    The Mayor should be ashamed. They should be included in the ceremony. What happened to all the brotherly love New Yorker’s are known for? I believe anyone from New York would want them to be there. I’m from Texas and I believe THE FIRST RESPONDERS SHOULD BE IN ATTENDANCE. The Mayor should kiss his re-election good-bye. I know I would not vote for him. This is his second blunder, the first is his religeous decision made earlier. I hope the city can come together and overrule that stupid decision. I have been watching the recently aired shows on the building of the memorial and new tower. The presentation is just wonderful and powerful. He needs to see the shows, again.

  25. Barbara Schena says:

    This is a disgrace upon th
    This is absolutely disgraceful. These politicians ought to be ashamed of themselves. How can we as Americans remember this tragedy without remembering the many brave men and women who fought to save lives. Many of those serving were volunteers and many died doing what they believed was the right thing to do. They gave thier lives fighting a battle on our own land. How can we let these heros down? By excluding those who survived, who made it possible for survivors to come out of the rubble. I thank God everyday for these brave men and women. I hope that if I am ever in need, I have these same kinds of heros to help me. God bless them and to those politicians who believe they are not important enough to invite, remember who the American people gave you the office you hold. And we can take it back. Remember 9/11. Remember the victims, the survivors, the heros.

  26. Dawn Rommel says:

    All I can say is wow, the politicians should be ashamed of themselves.

    I’m Not Invited To Ground Zero On 9/11

    I strapped a gun to my hip and a badge on my chest
    and I’m not invited to ground zero on 9/11

    I lost my right kidney to cancer
    and I’m not invited to ground zero on 9/11

    My left kidney is at stage III renal failure
    and I’m not invited to ground zero on 9/11

    I lost my thyroid to cancer
    and I’m not invited to ground zero on 9/11

    I suffer from Reactive Airways Dysfunction Syndrome (RADS)
    and I’m not invited to ground zero on 9/11

    I have a lesion on the right side of my brain
    and I’m not invited to ground zero on 9/11

    I suffer from lung scarring, inflammation, atelectasis
    and I’m not invited to ground zero on 9/11

    I suffer from chronic bronchitis, small airway disease, growing lung nodules
    and I’m not invited to ground zero on 9/11

    I suffer from a chronic cough
    and I’m not invited to ground zero on 9/11

    I suffer from sinusitis and rhinitis
    and I’m not invited to ground zero on 9/11

    I am now disabled and have to fight for my benefits
    and I’m not invited to ground zero on 9/11

    I suffer at the hands of our self-serving politicians
    who invited themselves to ground zero on 9/11
    and yet, I’m not invited to ground zero on 9/11

    There was one other time I was not invited to ground zero
    September 11, 2001
    Guess it was a good thing myself and thousands of others showed up without an invitation.

    Sgt. Michael Swannick

    1. Michael Swannick says:

      Hi Dawn,

      Thanks for posting this here at CBS, I posted here myself. Not sure if the politicians are capable of being embarrassed to the point of conceding and allowing all first responders to attend the 9/11 ceremony. But you never know.

    1. Darci says:

      Thank you so much for posting my petition!

  27. Louise says:

    I think this decision is disgraceful, these firefighters were not invited on the day of the disaster, they simply arrived and out of sheer bravery fought to save the lives of others. They should not be side stepped for the face of politicians… The US should be ashamed of this decision. Louise. Dublin Ireland

  28. John JJ Jonah Jones says:

    Police Officer from the UK, this is an absolute disgrace, we’re having the same problems in the UK, Politicians railroading events that really have nothing to do with them…….pity them !

  29. Ed Degelsmith says:


  30. Wendy says:

    I’m completely and totally disgusted. First responders have every right to be there along with the families. If there isn’t enough space. . figure out something. But they should be there. period.

  31. CAROLINE says:


  32. P.F.C. William Bennett says:

    I think the thought of not allowing the men and women responders attend. Just is totally absurb.. They deserve to be a part of the ceremony as much as the president. This is not right…..

  33. Nancy Clark says:

    EXCUSE ME!!!! Didn’t we just watch the GOP, Tea Party and Democrats duke it out over the national debt!!!! The GOP and Tea Party insisted on spending cuts etc……..then the Speaker of the House says the government (really us taxpayers) will pay for some politicians who had nothing to do with responding to that horrific day, attend the ceremony!!!! I always thought Mr. Bloomberg was a smart man, a good problem solver, a good planner (with Irene coming up the coast, he made very good decisions), why can’t he find a way for these wonderful courageous first responders to attend the 9/11 ceremony!?!?! Come Mayor Bloomberg, make room for these folks…….a ceremony recognizing them at a later date is just NOT VERY RESPECTFUL at all!!

  34. kevin says:

    No one more then the families who lost someone,firefighters and the police officers that were there should be there more.
    Who cares of some politician coming from Washington D.C. or Albany.
    This day is not for politicial gain but to remember those who have fallen to a great tradegy.
    Politics has no business being here. I don’t live in NYC. But if I did for one I would not attend this meeting. I would wait until all the politicians are gone then attend.
    I hope the people of NYC which truely deserve to be there band together and protest this idiot of a Mayor.
    I truely hope no one shows up till after they are all gone. That would show this mayor the people speak of the city not you.

  35. Sharon Holdstock says:


  36. Ian M. says:

    I joined the Army after 9/11. My dad deployed less than a month after the towers fell. Now that I’m out of the Army I’m a volunteer firefighter and first responder in Hersey, MI. Politicians should have their ceremony at the Pentagon instead. Those that risked their lives and lost loved ones and brothers/sisters in uniform should be given first priority at the WTC site. I’ll be lowering the flag at my station at 8am in rememberance of my brothers/sisters in uniform, those in the towers, on the planes, and at the Pentagon that lost their lives. I urge everyone, whether in uniform or not, to show your respects by placing your flags at half mast and taking time to remember those that lost their lives that horrible day.

  37. Disgusted says:

    Tenth anniversary of the attack. Publicity hungry politicians want to attend? Let them sit right up front in case a terrorist bomber is planning anything on this anniversary (like they speculate) and lets gets rid of some of the riff-raff in the D.C. area. Might be a good thing. (This is NOT the country I remember from days long gone by. This is thre greed, backstabbing country Lobbyist created which I am so ashamed of today. And yes, I would leave if I could so please no smart ass remarks.

    1. firemanbj says:

      Disgusted, It’s not the Lobbyist fault! They are just doing a job they were hired to do. That job might be bribing politicans, but still not their fault! The politican that excepts that bribe is at fault! The politicans have succomb to their own GREED! And the needs of our nation and it’s people have taken a back seat to their wants and desires. They stand before us and promise things that they themselfs now won’t and can’t get done! (LIE) All for personal gain. ALL PARTIES ARE GUILTY OF THIS! Until we as a nation start listining to individuals and not parties, WE”RE DOOMED! There is still good in people/politians in all parties. Finding them and giving them a chance is the challange. Have WE forgotten, “UNITED WE STAND, DIVIDED WE FALL!”?

  38. Darci says:

    I am appalled that Mayor Bloomberg would even hesitate to include first responders in the ceremony. They were not invited 10 years ago but they came anyway and saved thousands of lives. Must we not forget the lack of respect/services they were provided after to cope with the tragedy that they voluntarily risked their lives for — as they do every day. As a firefighter’s daughter and a sister of an EMT and volunteer firefighter, I am directly disrespected for this decision.

    So I hope you join me in signing a petition that I have started to tell Mayor Bloomberg to show the honor and respect that first responders deserve.

  39. Tomi says:

    I thought this was a joke when I first heard of this. If they made room for them on 9-11, they sure as hell can make room for them now!

  40. Lola Sullivan says:

    Mary Anne, I could not agree more. Well said

  41. Ken Jarmin says:

    A comment from the UK.
    Without those brave first responders who were not invited the first time round I wonder how many more would not have made it out of the towers. Maybe the secondary ceremony ought to be reserved for Messrs Obama and Bush and their cohorts. Let the actual anniversary be for the victim’s families and those who were brave enough to try to save lives on the day

  42. Doug Parsons says:

    I am sorry that we elect politicians that actually think it’s ok to not invite the people who deserve it most, What a disgrace this is to the memory of our fallen. If I was one of the first responders I would go anyway just to see what would happen, it was said already but I will say it again, if we can get so many people into times square for New Years this should be a walk in the park. Shame on you New York.

  43. John Kolthoff says:

    On Friday, House Speaker Rep. John Boehner said the government would be paying for representatives from New York, New Jersey and Connecticut to attend the ceremony.
    Look at this you will pay to have these representatives come in, where were they when the first responders where heading in to the towers. You can use tax payers money to get them there , let us vote on how you spend our money
    ( don’t forget you are voted in office).Why not take that money and get all the first responders there. They also lost love ones brothers, sisters,husbands,wives. (343 Never Forget)

  44. Christe M. says:

    Let the “Dignitaries” they are so worried about attend. Separate ceremony! 9/11 should be all about victim’s families and first responders! THE END!

  45. Sandy Nelson-Hollon says:

    They were the first who responded 10 years ago and they should be the first to be on the guest list now. God Bless all the police and First Responders and their families. Not much to say for you politicians

  46. Catharine says:

    One word SHAMEFULL

  47. Jeanne Shearer says:


  48. Sandrine Garceran says:

    I’m from France but live in Ontario Canada….10 years anniversary. the priority and most important people that must be there are, all family of lost loved ones, the firefighters, the police officers that helped rescuing people from both towers. the ones that were forced to stay behind and watched in horror their brothers in arms die, the simple fearless, unselfish person that put their lives ahead of their own without thinking..Names of the deads and missing will be read. Are you going to stand proud when the firefighters and policemen names are mentioned, but noone is there in uniforms to represent them.
    This is not a political event.. But rememberance day of a nightmare. Noone will ever forget where they were at that time, ever.
    If it is the only way for you to get it Mr. Micheal R. Bloomberg, think of re-election. You think New-Yorkers are going to stand behind you or behind the ones that have had to sacrifice their life or would sacrifice their life for any stranger..
    So think a little, and make yourself look good, Mr. Micheal R. Bloomberg. . Let everyone, that wants to be there, be there.
    The whole world suffered that days….

  49. Brandie renae says:

    I think …. if that is indeed true? Mayor Bloomberg shouldn’t be “invited” back to be mayor.

    While I understand putting limits … why not make it something where people are allowed in shifts? that way all who want to attend CAN.

    EVERYONE should be allowed to attend. there was plenty of room for them to be there in the heat of things. … they risked their lives in the aftermath … but they can’t attend?


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